My wife just reminded me that we’re in the midst of the annual Kid Birthday Season. It’ll start with my daughter Briani’s second birthday in a couple weeks and will continue until about mid-October. My birthday in early November pretty much bookmark’s the end of back to back birthday weekends.
I’m not sure how many guys are like me, but until five or so years ago, I absolutely dreaded kid birthday season. Back then I thought I was too busy leading a successful company, Hispanic PR Wire, to spend time at birthday parties. To me, unless it was my own kids’ birthday, parties were a waste of my precious time and something I thought was only for the mommies.
Five years ago my father’s death and other circumstances led me to rethink a lot of things about my life. One of them was the value of birthday parties.
If you’re a dad who thinks like I did or is simply new to fatherhood, let me tell you why going to kid birthdays with your family is real good for you and your family.
1. You get to observe how your kids interact with other children. This reason alone can prove invaluable to you as a parent because it goes without saying that our kids behave differently when they’re socializing with other children. You see things about your kids – some actually very good and some scary – in birthday party environments that you can’t observe at home.
2. Your kids will learn to associate you with fun, happy memories they will appreciate. Probably until your kids turn 12 or 13, they will appreciate that you take them to their family and friends’ birthday parties. This will change once they believe they’re too cool to have you as their chaperone but until then, birthday parties become a frame of reference for you for memories.
3. Birthday parties are an excuse to hang with friends or make new parent friends. Networking with other parents can be invaluable to you as a parent and/or couple as you get to hear the war stories you need to know about. Part of the reason I even publish this blog is because I treasure what I’ve learned from other parents. Birthday parties are great places to mingle and learn with parents of kids that are usually in your children’s same age range.
I know it’s tough for us guys to get the will to go to yet one more party but as long as you and your spouse don’t overdose on parties (too much back to back is not good either), birthday parties can enrich your life as a father.
POST SCRIPT: Speaking of birthday parties, this coming Sunday we will be giving away a Balloon Time Helium Balloon Kit. To learn how to win it click on our Facebook Contest story at http://papiblogger.com/2010-family-road-trip-log/papiblogger-announces-facebook-fan-page-contest-guess-how-many-photos-we-took/